B2change I want to see in the world!

Why You Can’t Make a Deal with God by Ben Edwards

We’ve all heard it, and most of us have either thought it or even prayed it. “God, if You [do this thing I currently want], then I’ll [do something I probably should do but haven’t].” We find ourselves in a situation we don’t like or lacking something we crave, yet we feel incapable of attaining our desire. Thus, we turn to someone we believe is capable of accomplishing what we want and hope God will show us favor.

But we understand how life works. People don’t just give away favors. They want something in return. So we begin to barter with others when we are seeking their favors. We started doing this when we were young (e.g., trading your sandwich for your friend’s crackers). The other person has something we want—either an item (good) or the ability to accomplish something (service)—so we offer him something we think he wants. In our society the most common bartering item is money—you give me something and I give you money in exchange. But we occasionally offer other goods or services (e.g., housing and food in exchange for childcare; use of vehicles in exchange for professional work, etc.). In each situation, the offer is successful only if both parties have something the other lacks or needs.

But there’s a problem when we try to barter with God. He doesn’t lack or need anything! The truth that God does not need anything is part of a larger truth of God’s self-sufficiency or aseity. This means that God’s existence comes from Himself, thus He is not dependent on anyone or anything else. We as humans derive our existence from God and live continually in dependence on Him (Col 1:17), but God exists in Himself and needs nothing (Exod 3:14; Acts 17:24-25).

Most pagan gods respond to the barter system. You offer sacrifices to a god, and he responds to help you in the way that he can. Thus, you worship the god of travel, and he in return gives you safe travel; you bring a sacrifice to the god of fertility, and he makes you fruitful; or you give to the god of war to make your army successful.

The Christian God is nothing like these pagan gods, which means we have nothing to offer God that would make Him respond by giving us a favor.

  • “God, if you give me this raise than I’ll give you 15% of it.” God is not sitting in heaven wondering how he will be able to finance His work and hoping someone steps up to foot the bill. The whole world is His! (Ps 50:9-12)
  • “God, if you heal me of this sickness, I’ll go to church every Sunday.” God does not struggle through the week waiting for Sunday to come and hoping more people show up this time to lift His spirits. God takes pleasure in true worship, but He does not need it.
  • “God, if you get me out of this difficult situation, then I’ll [stop doing something wrong or start doing something right].” God is not fretting over whether or not people do what is wrong or right. He has commanded us to do right and will justly punish us for doing wrong (either we bear the punishment or Christ does). So God is pleased with our obedience, but does not need it.

Why does it matter whether or not we can barter with God? Because if we can’t barter with Him, that means we have to accept His terms. We can’t entice Him with our offers. We can only accept His offers. He is not impressed by our promises of service or obedience and will not respond to them. But He, of His own will, determined to offer us a relationship with Him as a gift on the basis of faith in Jesus Christ. We must submit ourselves fully to Him, offering our lives to Jesus as Lord. And He promises to give us eternal life—a relationship with Him.

God is the one who establishes what He will do and what we will do, and we either accept or reject those terms. But we can’t try to change the terms to something we prefer—you can’t barter with God.

Sowing and Reaping Judment, Sephora

I have read today that: Sowing and reaping does not apply only to the agricultural and financial realms, it also applies to the mental realm. We can sow and reap an attitude as well as a crop or an investment. (Joyce Meyer)

Do not judge and criticize and condemn others, so that you may not be judged and criticized and condemned yourselves. For just as you judge and criticize and condemned, and in accordance with the measure you [use to] deal out to others, it will be dealt out again to you. Matthew 7:1,2

So today, if/when I hear that someone has been talking about me in an unkind or judgmental way, I will ask myself, “Am I sowing or am I reaping? Many times we are reaping in our lives what we have previously sown into the life of another. How about you readers?

 

10 Hopes and Dreams from the Bible from Kristine Brown

My parents taught me to never give up hope. My teachers inspired me to dream big. I still hold on to those ideals today, but when that job offer doesn’t come or the diagnosis from the doctor brings disappointment, I begin to ask myself this question. Am I hoping for the right things?

God knew we would face discouragement. He provided for those times by giving us verses like this. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope” (Romans 15:13). The Word motivates us to keep moving forward when our situations seem hopeless.

But how do we know if we are hoping for the right things? How do we know if our big dreams are from God? Here are 10 hopes and dreams in the Bible. Let’s allow them to uplift us today and draw our attention back to the “God of hope.”

1. Hope for God’s promise fulfilled, against all logic.

“The Lord said to Abram, ‘Leave your native country, your relatives, and your father’s family, and go to the land that I will show you. I will make you into a great nation’” (Genesis 12:1-2b NLT).

God made an unbelievable promise to Abraham. Yet Abraham demonstrated hope in the fulfillment of the Lord’s promise. “In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, ‘So shall your offspring be’” (Romans 4:18).

2. Hope to endure our suffering.

“Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope,” (Romans 5:3-4).

Paul lived a life full of tribulation. Because of that, he could speak these Holy Spirit inspired words with confidence. God teaches us through the apostle Paul how rejoicing in our suffering will lead to strengthening our hope.

3. A dream to build something great for God.

“Then King David rose to his feet and said: ‘Hear me, my brothers and my people. I had it in my heart to build a house of rest for the ark of the covenant of the Lord and for the footstool of our God, and I made preparations for building’” (1 Chronicles 28:2).

David desired to give God his best. Although he had good intentions, God directed David to pass the responsibility of building the temple to his son, Solomon. The gospel message kindles a fire inside us to dream big for God. Just like God had a special plan for David and Solomon, He has one for each of us too.

4. Hope for a better future.

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11).

This well-known verse in Jeremiah comes in the midst of a warning. The Lord speaks to the prophet with strong admonition for His children, but also reassures them of His ultimate desire. God loves us and wants us to obey His commands.

5. Hope to reach the Promised Land.

“And Joshua commanded the officers of the people, ‘Pass through the midst of the camp and command the people, ‘Prepare your provisions, for within three days you are to pass over this Jordan to go in to take possession of the land that the Lord your God is giving you to possess’” (Joshua 1:10-11).

After a 40-year trek, the Israelites prepared to enter the land God promised. He reassured Joshua with the words, “… do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go” (1:9). The path may seem confusing when we can’t see what’s ahead. But God will bring us to the place He promised, and He will be with us on the journey.

6. A dream for freedom.

“Only remember me, when it is well with you, and please do me the kindness to mention me to Pharaoh, and so get me out of this house” (Genesis 40:14).

Joseph knew one day the dream God gave him would become reality. But first, he needed to trust God with one minor detail – he needed to get out of prison. The chief cupbearer Joseph spoke to in this verse may have forgotten Joseph, but God hadn’t. In His timing, the Lord released Joseph from jail and established him in a place of honor.

7. Hope to finish God’s assignment.

“But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus – the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God” (Acts 20:24 NLT).

We serve in the local church, work full-time jobs, and raise families. We give to missions, support ministries, and volunteer our time. Sometimes we get tired, but Paul’s perseverance provides just the example we need. The good news of my Savior brings me refreshment and renewed hope.

8. Hope for Christ’s return.

“And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also” (John 14:3).

The disciples didn’t want to hear that Jesus would be leaving them. The thought of living life without Jesus by their side? It seemed too much to bear. But Jesus reassured believers with these words that still comfort us today. He will come again.

9. Hope for eternal life.

“… in hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began” (Titus 1:2).

In Paul’s greeting at the beginning of Titus, he reminds us of the ultimate promise we receive when we choose to accept Jesus Christ as Lord. We will one day live forever with Him. Jesus gave His life so we could have that hope.

10. Hope in God alone.

“And now, oh Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in you” (Psalm 39:7).

David’s song shares the answer to our question. When hopelessness threatens to take over, God is the definition of hope. Keeping our hopes and dreams rooted in God alone gives us peace for each new day. Let’s place our hopes and dreams in God with this assurance, “For you, O Lord, are my hope…” (Psalm 71:5).

4 Reasons to Face the New Year without Fear by Adrian Rogers

God’s Word brings us a comforting promise, along with an insightful command as we face a new year: “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for He hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, I will not fear what man shall do unto me” (Hebrews 13:5-6).

We can live this coming year without fear if we apply these four incredibly wonderful truths to our lives and root them deep into our hearts.

The Contentment of His Provision

Contentment is not getting what you want, but it is wanting what you already have. 1 Timothy 6:6-8 says, “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us therewith be content.” If you know Jesus Christ, you have contentment. If you’ve got clothes on your back, something to eat, and Jesus Christ in your heart, you’re rich!

Do you know why we have fear? Because we think our needs or the needs of someone we love are not going to be met. Or we fear that the things we think are meeting our needs are going to be taken away from us. The deepest need of your heart can only be met in the Lord Jesus Christ.

I don’t know what I’m going to face next year. But there’s one thing I know, He will never leave me. Are you a child of God? He will never leave you either. Isn’t that wonderful!

What’s another reason we may fear in the coming year? Because we’re afraid we’re going to have to face something we don’t understand, and we’re going to have to face it alone.

When God’s Word promises that God will never forsake you, it literally means that He will never abandon you. He will not give up on you. We need to practice the presence of the Lord this coming year. When the devil comes and knocks at you heart’s door, you can simply say, “Jesus, please go answer the door.”

The Confidence of His Promise

We’re going to zero in on a little phrase in our verses in Hebrews, “He hath said.” A promise is no better than the one who makes it. Who says, “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee”? It is the omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent God. This is the confidence of His promise.

In the coming year, when you say, “God, I just don’t have the strength.” The omnipotent God will answer, “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee.” When you say, “God, I’m afraid of what is going to happen.” The omnipresent God says, “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee.” And when you say, “God, I don’t know what to do.” The omniscient God will respond, “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee.” He himself hath said it.

The Comfort of His Protection

Hebrews 13:6 promises, “So that we may boldly say, the Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.” Now, put that with verse 5, which says, “He hath said.”

 

13 Reasons you are precious to God! by Mark Altrogge

We who believe in Jesus can often be more aware of our sin and unworthiness than God’s love for and delight in us. We may believe that God accepts us in his son, but it’s hard to believe he takes pleasure in us and views us as precious to him. Yet 1 Peter 5:7 tells us that God cares for us. Zephaniah 3:17 tells us God delights in his children and rejoices over them. Here are thirteen reasons you are precious to God:

Because he created you Because he created you in his own image Because he purchased you with the blood of his Son Because he has washed away all your sins Because he adopted you as his own child Because he has joined you to Christ, made you one with his Son Because you are part of his bride Because he has put his own Spirit in you Because he is transforming you more and more into the likeness of his Son Because he is manifesting a fragrance of Christ through you to the world Because he has imputed the very righteousness of Christ to you Because he has plans and a purpose for you Because you delight in his Son and desire to obey and glorify him

We can’t fathom God’s incredible love for us. In and of ourselves, there would be nothing to attract him, nothing for him to delight in. But he has made us new creations in Christ, created in the likeness of Jesus, in whom is all his delight.

Praise God today that he has made you precious and delightful to himself

For the Spirtual War- USE the Weapons of the Word!

For the weapons of our warfare are not physical (weapons of flesh and blood), but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds!

Jesus called the devil a liar, the father of lies and of all that is false(  John 8:44).  But he dies that in a subtle way by bombarding our mind with nagging thoughts, suspicious, doubts, fears, wonderings, reasoning and theories.  Through careful strategy, the enemy tries to set up strongholds, which is an area in which we are held in prison due to a certain way of thinking. But, we the Bible gives us many weapons. and one of them is the weapons of the Word. In John 8:31,32, it states” If you abide in My word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the Truth and the Truth will set you free.

These weapons are the Word received through preaching, teaching, books, CDs, DVDs, Conferences and Bible study… We must continue to abide in the Word until it becomes revelation given by inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Jesus says, “The measure you give will be the measure that comes back to you (Mark 4:24). We must continue using the weapon of the Word!

B2Change in action

On January 12, 2014. We went to the unique public hospital in Port-au-Prince, the capital city of Haiti,with a population of 10.17 million to share our blessings with eighty (80) ailing in the abandoned rooms of hundreds people.
Those people rarely received visits from doctors, cannot afford to buy the medicine they need and do not have family, friends or acquaintances to take care of them.
We brought them some hope with a complete toilet kit and food as a way to be thankful for being alive today when 4 years ago over two hundred thousands people died in less than 45 seconds. 

2014 – 5 pillars Resolution

My 2014 resolution is to be 2 (the) change I want to see in the world. I aim to grow in obedience to Christ’s words.

My 5 pillars are:

  1.  Faith -Believe: I will start  my journey by renewing my faith in Jesus as the starting point in everything by
  •  a) believing in his power to strengthen  me ( Phil 4v13) ;
  • b) believing in his power to protect me (Joshua 1 v 9) ;
  • c) believing in his power to provide (Phil 4v19

2.  Behave – Obedience: I will make sure that what “I do” speaks as loud as what I say by

  • Showing Christ my daily life (1 Peter 1v14)
  • Witnessing Christ in my daily life
  • Show Christ in my church fellowship (1 Thim 3v15)

3. Beware-Vigilance: I will beware of the deception of man (Col 2v8 )

  • Beware of the share of the devil (1 Peter 5)
  • Beware of my own self, my desire in my flesh (Luk 12:15)

4.  Belong- Fellowship: I will also remember always that I belong to Christ (Rom 1v6)

Make the new year to be all about choosing, all about growing in my ability to listen and obey the holy spirit not  trying to impress or conform to the expectations of others.